This weekend, the PPG Paints Arena in Pittsburgh will play host to a night of hard-hitting wrestling action. That’s right, it’s time for WWE Payback! And with that I’d like to use this opportunity to make up for my less-than-stellar predictions for SummerSlam last month. Since then I vowed to study more tape, analyze every segment, say my prayers, eat my vitamins, whatever it took to get the next show right. Well now is the time, and I’m ready to go 6-0 tomorrow night!
One of the matches I’m looking forward to most has to be the World Heavyweight Championship bout between Shinsuke Nakamura and the defending champ Seth “Freakin” Rollins. Nakamura seems to have grown a bit more of an edge to him since blindsiding Rollins a month ago. He’s already pointed out how he plans to exploit Rollins’ longstanding back injuries in his favor. Will the champ have a gameplan to thwart Nakamura’s attempt to usurp his reign?
Payback will also feature two matches that many believe should’ve been on the SummerSlam card were it not for timing conflicts. After a vicious feud spanning across much of 2023, Becky Lynch will finally get her hands on her former friend Trish Stratus, and the fighting will be done inside a steel cage! And from Monday Night Raw, Rhea Ripley of Judgment Day will defend her Women’s World Championship against Raquel Rodriguez. Rhea has run roughshod over every opponent put in front of her since winning the title at WrestleMania, but if anyone has a chance at standing toe-to-toe with Mami, it’s gotta be Raquel.
I won’t lie, the WWE Payback card feels a lot more straightforward and low stakes than SummerSlam’s did. Save for a couple matches that I’ll get into, I feel extremely confident about my predictions. I expect to do a clean sweep this weekend and restore my good name among the wrestling nerd community. Let’s get into it!